Published by Aria Fiction on March 5, 2020
Genres: Women's Fiction
Verity seems to have it all. A beautiful home, two grown-up sons and a husband who has always been her rock. But one day, the doorbell rings. And it changes Verity's life forever.
Saskia has nowhere else to go. Before she died, her mother left her with her father's name and nothing else. The only way for Saskia to take care of herself – and her unborn baby – is to find the father she never knew. And the family that didn't know she existed.
This family secret means the end of everything they've ever known. But could it also be the chance for a new beginning?
I start by saying I would give this 3.5 stars. A Mother’s Secret hints at a grand mystery, but there’s not much to ruminate on. But, that doesn’t mean I didn’t like it. Minna Howard’s dialogue and character development are all very nicely done. Her writing style brought me straight into the story and I was immediately invested. So, why the so-so mark? There were a couple of reasons.
I did very much enjoy getting to know Verity. She’s an open and generous woman, who is feeling a bit lonely. Her son’s have recently returned to university, and her husband has left the country for work. When Saskia rings the bell and claims that Verity’s husband is her father, Verity is kind enough to listen to Saskia’s desperate situation (she’s pregnant herself) and allow her to stay with her for a short time while they sort this out. Maybe she’s a bit too trusting? Sounds like a lot of drama is about to unfold. And yes, each woman has drama is their lives, and this is what the story is about.
Can Verity handle the bully of a parent at the school she teaches at? Will Saskia get her HEA with the father of her child and find the father she’s never known? I enjoyed traveling these paths with these women. I was more connected to Verity than Saskia, but I could understand her heartache.
While I liked the characters, what I had a problem with is something I very rarely comment on, and that’s editing. There was ambiguity on what the secret was. If it was who Saskia’s father was, she thought she had the answer only to find that challenged as well. Which seemed like a silly addition to the story and only bothersome, and yet again no real drama added.
But the oddest thing was the line the story ended on. Without going into it, it just felt as though someone thought they were being clever, but I can’t see what was clever in it. It was just confusing and for that, I felt a bit let down and had to question what I might have missed. I guess each women’s story as pretty well wrapped up, but still. All that said I would definitely read another book by Minna Howard.
~Review by Cyndi
About the author: Minna has had an exciting career in fashion journalism and now writes full time, whilst enjoying time with her grandsons and working as an occasional film and TV extra. She lives in London.